MESA, Arizona — Bruce Maxwell made national headlines last September when he became the first player in Major League Baseball to kneel in protest against social injustice during the national anthem. Maxwell continued to kneel before every game until the end of the year, but he has decided to no longer do so for the 2018 season.
“Taking a knee during the national anthem last season was not a decision I made lightly,” Maxwell said in a statement. “As a member of a military family, I respect the sacrifices of the men and women who served and continue to serve our country. The purpose of the gesture was to raise awareness about social issues affecting our country, and while I’m looking forward to a society that is inclusive, empathetic and a welcoming place, I will not continue the symbolic gesture of taking a knee during our National Anthem this season.”
Maxwell is expected to be the A’s starting catcher, but there are still legal issues he has to deal with stemming from an incident last October in which he pulled out a gun on a food delivery driver at the front door of his home in Arizona.
A trial date is set for Aug. 9 for Maxwell. He did not get too much into the ongoing legal process, only saying that it is “progressive” and that his lawyers are handling it.
Maxwell was hoping to have everything settled by the time he arrived to camp on Tuesday.